can run the heaviest tandem-axle loads in the U.S., thanks to
recently passed legislation. Heavier concrete trucks now allowed
on Georgia's local road system could make roads less safe, say
officials. The new law likely will force city and county governments
to pay an estimated $1 billion to upgrade roads and bridges.
of Transportation spokesman, Brantley explained that the DOT had
lobbied heavily against the bill, but in his opinion, pro-business
lawmakers wanted the legislation to foster economic development.
The measure now will allow concrete makers to ship product more
cheaply to more parts of the state, he said.
said two-axle trucks that weigh as much as 46,000 pounds, up from
a limit of 40,680 now will be allowed on city streets and county
roads built for much lighter traffic.
trucks had limited travel parameters before the bill passed. According
to the Atlanta-Journal Constitution's search of political records
concrete companies made political donations of $10,350 to bill
sponsor Sen. Nathan Dean (D-Rockmart) after the bill was signed
into law. Later building and hauling companies chipped in $7,100.
said his bill initially did not increase weight limits. It was
intended to add concrete trucks to a short list of others in the
state that could exceed the old 40,680-pound limit when making
deliveries. He said the higher weight limits were added later
when the bill went through the House.
everybody wants their truck on that list," says OOIDA's Gary
Green. "Just do the numbers, for every eight loads concrete
haulers get a free one."
The new limit
is expected to save concrete, poultry, construction, logging,
feed and mining companies money because they can carry more on
each trip. Deputy DOT Commissioner Harold Linnenkohl said he was
disappointed with the change. "It will add up to more wear
and tear on the roads," he said.